Friday 05 April 2024, 06:00

Multiple job-holding report provides insights to help improve elite women’s football

  • Report is part of FIFA's efforts to accelerate the professionalisation of women's football

  • It marks the latest step taken to close football’s research gap – one of the key commitments within FIFA’s women’s football strategy

  • Four key recommendations for stakeholders are highlighted

FIFA has released a report which examines the circumstances of elite female players who, apart from football, hold other jobs, or have care or study commitments, in various countries around the world.

While women’s football at the top level has seen a remarkable trajectory towards professionalisation in the past twenty years, that rise presents its challenges. Players cannot always financially sustain themselves from football alone, requiring them to earn income through alternative means, and the extent to which this happens is an important indicator of the game’s progress.

The report, Multiple Job-Holding in Elite Women’s Football, was commissioned to better understand the state of play across the globe, in line with FIFA’s ambition to accelerate the professionalisation of women’s football by creating an accurate picture of the elite landscape. It was completed in collaboration with Edith Cowan University in Australia and FIFPRO.

"Following a transformative FIFA Women's World Cup in 2023 and the launch of the FIFA Women's Football Strategy in 2018, the foundations for women's football are far stronger than they were several years ago," said FIFA Chief Women's Football Officer, Dame Sarai Bareman. "However, there is still a very long way to go. It is important that we produce reports such as this to show the reality many of our players face and to support all those involved in continuing the growth of the women's game."

FIFA Chief Women's Football Officer Sarai Bareman

The report surveyed 736 players from across 12 member associations (MAs), covering all six confederations. Players in Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Chile, England, Fiji, Korea Republic, Mexico, New Zealand, Nigeria, Sweden, and the United States provided anonymous input and were given a voice.

The report makes four key recommendations, advising stakeholders to:

  • Consider the footballer holistically.

  • Be aware of and adjust for the workload of multiple job-holding and other demands on the footballer.

  • Support footballers in juggling multiple demands with greater security necessary if football cannot be flexible.

  • Take a two-pronged approach to football careers in relation to resourcing and management.

Each of these key recommendations is explored. They highlight that, while there has been great progress in terms of professionalisation space, there is still work to be done.

The report is the latest step into closing the research gap in football, where historically there is far more information and data on men than women. Along with other FIFA reports such as the ‘Setting the Pace’ Benchmarking Report and Member Associations Survey Report, it is intended to ensure that decision-makers have access to accurate, evidence-based information of the landscape to improve.

Women's Football